Auction your paper?

I am not suggesting you accept this suggestion, but it is amusing, intriguing, and somewhat sensible. Given that it comes from Richard Smith, former editor of the BMJ, it deserves consideration. In his words, “instead of submitting your paper to one journal you should auction it to the highest bidder. Today I did it.” Smith explains, “Authors… estimate the highest impact journal in which they might reasonably get published, and, … then might wait months only for their paper to be rejected.” But Smith notes, as I used to remind my students, journals need authors almost as  much as authors need journals. Thus the idea of auctioning your paper. Smith came across an old paper, brushed it up, and, initially, offered the paper through Twitter and received four offers. It seems he accepted one 0 He concludes, “This looks like the future to me. Let’s us authors turn the tables.”

Editor: Its not clear where the ‘auctioning’ comes in but, as is often the case with Smith at his provocative best, he is trying to make a point so let’s not worry about the details. Clearly this gives us food for thought. That said, I would not advise authors who are lesser lights to run this route before trying the customary pathways to publication.

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